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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, I have a Colt Navy 1851: Colt Archives indicates via picture and serial number it was manufactured between 1861 and 1863 ( No records available-lost or destroyed.) they said colt blued some colts during this period. My question: Do any of you know if it is possible to be a colt manufactured bluing. Richard. [email protected]
Thank you
 

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No Mike, the frame was color case hardened. Also, some guards and backstraps were iron, altho in the 1861 period I think they stopped doing that. Richard, the records were destroyed by the fire at Colt in 1864 which burned the plant to the ground...confederate sabateurs were blamed. Can you post a picture for us?
 

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No Mike, the frame was color case hardened. Also, some guards and backstraps were iron, altho in the 1861 period I think they stopped doing that. Richard, the records were destroyed by the fire at Colt in 1864 which burned the plant to the ground...confederate sabateurs were blamed. Can you post a picture for us?
100% right according to both Haven and Belden's monumental book and R.L. Wilson's "Book of Colt Firearms" - all 3 editions!
In addition to the frame, the hammer and trigger were case hardened. The rest of the gun was blued. Most TG's and BS's were silver plated brass. The only ones not plated were those sold under military contract. The Iron TG and BS's were of two kinds: Those made in the London factory, Hartford made guns that used left-over parts from England after the London plant closed, and some military contract pistols that were made to accommodate a detachable shoulder stock.
 

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Many of the Civil War shipping records long thought lost turned up years ago in a private collection. They were then owned by Doug Donnelly of USFA for a few years before he sold them to the State of Connecticut. I do not know what kind of access they provide ( the plan was to scan and put online) but they are in the same building with the old factory gun collection in the State Supreme Court building in Hartford.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Mike your first answer was correct, I checked on Colt Archive Page and they indicated Colt did blue the 1851 Navy serial numbers to 218,xxx. Mine is 198,xxx. I also found a colt letter for a Navy with # 101,xxx and the letter stated finish Blue....
Thanks again for your answer.
 

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Mike your first answer was correct, I checked on Colt Archive Page and they indicated Colt did blue the 1851 Navy serial numbers to 218,xxx. Mine is 198,xxx. I also found a colt letter for a Navy with # 101,xxx and the letter stated finish Blue....
Thanks again for your answer.

You do not understand Colt's terminology. In reference to guns such as your 1851 Navy, other percussion models, the SAA, and other guns that had case colored frames with blued barrels and cylinders, Colt calls the finish "blue."

So "blue" does not mean "all blue." I THINK when a gun was all blued originally the letter will say "full blue."

John Gross
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Colt's termjnology.

You do not understand Colt's terminology. In reference to guns such as your 1851 Navy, other percussion models, the SAA, and other guns that had case colored frames with blued barrels and cylinders, Colt calls the finish "blue."

So "blue" does not mean "all blue." I THINK when a gun was all blued originally the letter will say "full blue."

John Gross[/QUOTE
I appreciate the information. I have seen several pictures of colt Navy 1851s with all blue barrels and cylinders and I do not know what the letters state, I understand many of the records were lost or destroyed.. Thank you . Richard
 
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